Namibian Adventurer

13 days
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2,985 CAD
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4.7 / 5 from 7 reviews >
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Trip code: 
FAN
Ways to Travel:
Family Group, Tailormade Adventures
Activity:
Family
Min age:
8
Group size:
4–12

Find out how alive and diverse the desert can be from big dunes to big cats

The sun is rising and we are sat atop one of the highest dunes in the world. A burst of orange and red explodes on the surrounding landscape as warm rays caress the shifting sand. We are in Sossusvlei. Over the coming days we explore the country’s amazing diversity, sit by watering holes watching wildlife, hike through rock formations to ancient engravings, enjoy Viennese style cake shops, meet traditional tribes and discover a country where the desert scenery changes with every turn and the night sky sparkles with countless stars.

Highlights

  • Climb the highest sand dunes in the world
  • Fantastic wildlife viewing at Etosha National Park
  • Optional quad-biking and sandboarding at Swakopmund
  • Full service camping - no need to lift a finger!

Key information

  • Travel in an overland truck with standing space and reference library
  • Group normally 4 to 12, plus leader
  • 4 nights lodges and 1 night chalet, all en suite, 7 nights camping
  • Some long drives

What's included

  • All breakfasts, 8 lunches and 8 dinners included
  • All accommodation (see below)
  • All transport and listed activities
  • Tour leader throughout
  • Flights from London (if booking incl. flights)
  • Arrival & departure transfers

What's not included

  • Travel insurance
  • Single accommodation (available on request)
  • Visas or vaccinations
Call for general departures:
1 800 267 3347
Call for tailormade trips:
1 800 267 3347
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Responsible Travel

At Exodus we believe in the power of Responsible Travel.

Every time we travel, we are part of a global movement that creates jobs, builds more sustainable societies, encourages cultural understanding and safeguards common natural and cultural heritage. To learn more about what Responsible Travel means to Exodus click here… 

Itinerary

  • Day 1

    Start Windhoek.

    The starting point for this trip is the Arebbusch Lodge. For those on the group transfer, we spend sometime in the capital city to change money and collect supplies and then drive to the Arebbush Lodge on the outskirts of the city.
    Arebbusch Lodge or similar

  • Day 2

    Drive through Namib-Naukluft Park to Sesriem.

    Today we head southwest through the spectacular scenery of the Namib-Naukluft Park to our first campsite at Sesriem. This National Park, one of the largest in the world, is home to one of the driest and oldest deserts on earth. It contains the finest desert scenery in Africa, if not in the world, with towering jagged rock formations and incredible lunar landscapes. (300-350kms / 6-7hrs)
    NWR Sesriem Campsite or similar

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 3

    Sossusvlei Dunes and cheetah tracking

    Today we spend all day in the Namib Desert. Rising early we catch the tallest sand dunes in the world in the best light and have the opportunity to climb one of the dunes as the sun rises, truly one of Africa's greatest sights. We can either walk to Hiddenvlei or catch a transfer (optional extra) to Deadvlei where ancient acacia trees in the desert form an eerie scene. If we're lucky we may see gemsbok or ostrich among the sand dunes. In the afternoon we visit Sesriem Canyon before continuing onto our camp an hour away. We visit the Namib Carnivore Conservation Centre where we can join biologists working on a cheetah tracking and conservation project (depending on time we may go cheetah tracking tomorrow morning). (200kms / 3hrs).
    Solitaire Guest Farm or similar

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 4

    Travel through Namib Desert to Swakopmund via Walvis Bay.

    A long, but very scenic, drive through the Namib-Naukluft Park to Swakopmund. En route we visit Walvis Bay for lunch and to see local flamingos. Swakopmund is a small German colonial resort town with quaint cake shops and coffee houses and a centre for adrenaline activities. (300kms / 5.5hrs)
    Prost hotel or similar

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 5

    Full day in Swakopmund with optional activities.

    Today is spent in and around Swakopmund. There is time to go fishing, relax on the beach, or enjoy a cream tea and a seafood dinner along the front. If you're keen for some action, there are enough options for the whole family - take an optional dolphin watching cruise, experience the thrill of quad biking over the sand dunes or try the popular new sport of sandboarding. (200kms / 6hrs)
    Prost Hotel or similar

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 6

    Drive to Brandberg, Namibia's highest mountain.

    After a relaxing start we leave the cool breeze of the Atlantic Ocean behind and head inland towards Namibia’s highest mountain, Brandberg, in Damaraland. The Damaraland area is famous for the desert elephants which roam in the Ugab River. Star gazing is normally spectacular from this remote area (240kms / 3.5hrs).
    Bradberg Whilte Lady Lodge (camping) or similar

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 7

    White Lady Painting & Vingerklip

    We begin our day with a short drive to Brandberg, where we will enjoy a walk through valley 45 for approximately 1.5 hours. Along the way we will view beautiful, granite rock formations and a variety of birdlife. The valley takes us to the famous ‘White Lady’ rock painting which, along with a number of other small paintings and engravings, are thought to have been left by Bushmen at least 2000 years ago. Afterwards we will drive towards the Khorixas area where we should pass various Himba and Herero women selling crafts from the roadside. There is also the possibility of spotting Desert elephants and meerkats on the way. We will arrive at our accommodation after lunch and then in the afternoon we can view Vingerklip, a striking pinnacle of rock balancing vertically on its own (driving 230kms / 3.5hrs).
    Khorias Lodge or similar

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 8

    To famous Etosha National Park.

    The first day is spent with a scenic drive to Etosha. We should arrive in time to do a late afternoon game drive before setting up at our camp, which has an excellent waterhole for viewing game at night! Our itinerary allows plenty of time to really enjoy this fabulous game park. (240kms / 3.5hrs)
    Okaukujo Camp or similar

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Days 9-10

    Two days on game drives in Etosha.

    Etosha is a huge park with a mix of forest and grassland surrounding a large saltpan. Etosha is home to a great variety and number of game, which is easy to find as the animals congregate at different times around the waterholes. There are waterholes near the camps, and it is not uncommon for us to spend many hours watching a gala performance of animals: wildebeest, zebra, impala, springbok, kudu, elephant, giraffe, lion and even rhino are all common sights here. Those with patience are frequently rewarded by one of the greatest game spectacles in Southern Africa. Etosha is also a good place for birds, with plenty of water birds on the lakes and weaverbirds and hornbills in the trees. While in Etosha we move from Okakuejo to a camp in either Namutoni or Halali (they both have waterholes). These camps now offer optional night drives which you can book and pay for on arrival.
    Namutoni Camp or similar

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 11

    To Otjiwarongwe

    Relaxing start in the morning. We then drive to Otjiwarongwe area with a break for lunch and then camp on a private farm.(430kms / 7hrs).
    Wesrand Camp or similar

  • Day 12

    Trek at Waterberg Plateau.

    This morning we drive to the Waterberg Plateau, a 200 metre high gigantic flat-topped plateau covered with bushveld. It is one of the more fertile areas in Namibia and very colourful especially after the rains. Here there are several walking trails, including one leading to a spectacular viewpoint near the top of the plateau for a great view. In addition to a guided walk, there are many smaller walks that can be explored without a guide. (120kms / 2hrs)
    NWR Waterberg Lodge or similar

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 13

    Transfer to Windhoek; depart Windhoek.

    A drive of three and a half hours or so brings us back to Windhoek. Those not travelling with the group to London will leave us during the day. (320kms / 3.5hrs)

    Meals included: Breakfast
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Essential Info

Visas

Namibia

Visas for Namibia are not required for UK or Commonwealth passport holders. Other nationalities should check before travelling.
Please ensure you have a one full blank page in your passport.
If you are transiting through South Africa and are a non UK passport holder you may require a transit visa. Please check before travelling.

Please note that if flying via South Africa you will probably have to pass immigration there. New regulations, as of the 1 Oct 2014, mean that children under 18 will have to have an unabridged birth ciritificate showing the names of both parents. If the child is travelling with only one parent they will need to have an affidavit from the other parent, of no more then 3 months, confirming the child can travel with the other parent; a court order granting full legal guardianship of the child; or a death cirtificate of the deceased parent.

Vaccinations

Namibia

There are no mandatory vaccination requirements.

Recommended vaccinations are: Polio, Tetanus, Diphtheria, Typhoid, Hepatitis A.

Malaria prophylaxis is essential and we suggest that you seek advice from your GP or travel health clinic about which malaria tablets to take.

Eating and Drinking

All breakfasts, 8 lunches, 8 dinners.

Please allow approximately GBP10 per meal per person for meals not included. Camp meals will be wholesome and plentiful, but do not expect cordon bleu cuisine and please note it is not always easy to get a wide range of fresh vegetables. However, generally the standard of food is good. Vegetarians are well catered for but please inform us before departure of any special dietary requests. Please note that the availability of certain products can be minimal or non-existent, for example wheat or dairy-free. Please be prepared for this - you may be best advised to bring these items from home.

Weather

Windhoek

Is this trip for you?

Drive times on this trip are moderate and we will normally arrive at our destination by lunch time or just after lunch. We will rarely exceed 5 hours driving in one day, but some of the areas we visit are remote so the roads can be bumpy at times. There will be breaks on the longer drives and there is also a reference library on board the vehicle. It will be cooler during UK summer months so please ensure that you bring adequate warm clothing, especially for the evenings when the temperature can drop quickly when the sun goes down. It can also get very warm in UK winter months so bear this in mind when packing. We use a combination of lodges, chalets and campsites. There is a minimal time difference and we also visit some malaria areas. Activities such as climbing the sand dune at Sossusvlei and the walk to the White Lady painting could be challenging for younger children but there is the option to skip them.

Call for general departures:
1 800 267 3347
Call for tailormade trips:
1 800 267 3347
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Accommodation

Lodges, Chalet & Camping

The lodges and chalet we use are all located in natural settings and generally have good facilities such as a bar and swimming pool. The campsites used are secure and have full ablution blocks and generally swimming pools as well.

Please note that due to the limited amount of accommodation within Etosha National Park, it may be necessary to sleep outside the park on some or all of the nights that we are there. This will not impact on the number of game drives that we have within the park.

Single accommodation (available on request)

Call for general departures:
1 800 267 3347
Call for tailormade trips:
1 800 267 3347
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Experts

Contact a member of staff who has done this trip

Call for general departures:
1 800 267 3347
Call for tailormade trips:
1 800 267 3347
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Expert Blog Entries

  • Reviewed August 2016
    Robert Milner

    Sand, Stars, Sunsets and Safari!

    This was a wonderful trip for so many reasons - the adventure, the scenery, the food, the company, the organisation and the animals to name a few. Three families and two guides who had never met before the trip soon melded into a happy group. The trip starts in the desert and the early rise to climb Dune 45 was blooming' cold! However, it was worth it and Jonas' porridge soon warmed us up. Swapokmund was a short re-entry into civilisation and gave the opportunity for a variety of trips. We did the seal colony boat trip and the flight over the desert. Both great (although the latter made some passengers feel extremely queasy). The bush men drawings were really interesting and then the trip to Etosha was just wonderful - particularly sitting by the waterhole in the evening watching rhinos wander in and out. The campsites were great. The Etosha ones very busy and the others very quiet. Food cooked by Jonas was great. As another reviewer has said it's amazing to see what he could knock up on a camp fire. Stews, steaks, cakes and bread. The lodges came at welcome intervals. One was a little like a deserted military camp but the beds were comfy. That and the lunchtime food at the NWR resorts (the Etosha campsites) are the only negatives I think. The whole trip passed quickly but it felt like we'd been away from home for a month. It was wonderful mental relaxation.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    So many to mention. The sunrise at Dune 45, seeing the Milky Way and shooting stars at night, for me the flight over the desert. But the waterhole in Etosho was undoubtedly the most special thing for me.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Ronney was our leader and he was a star. Unflustered, level headed, knowledgable, great with the kids. He took all the hassle out of the trip and enabled us all to just follow and have a holiday. Jonas was the cook and I've already mentioned his culinary skills. He was also a really lovely guy.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    There was a cold snap just as we arrived. Temperatures were really cold. Make sure you have enough cold weather gear. We did - just about. Be prepared to relax and be led. Not everything is going to be perfect but it was invariably good enough. The less polished bits are part of the adventure. Bring a light for inside your tent. Prepared to be dusty and dirty and don't overpack. Bring lots of moisturiser - it's really dry in August.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    A great trip enjoyed by the four in my family and I think by everyone on the trip. We're looking at what adventure we can go on next....
  • Reviewed September 2015
    John Flatley

    Namibian Adventurer FAN

    Six of us went on this trip - parents and offspring aged 14, 18, 21 and 23, and we all agree that it is one of the best experiences we have ever had. The Itinerary is well thought out and there is a good distribution of camping and non-camping days. All the campsites were interesting and all toilet and washing facilities were at least acceptable but usually excellent and spotless. Most of the campsites had swimming pools which were, um, refreshing! The Lodges were clean and comfortable and there were good facilities for charging electrical equipment at Lodges, campsites and even in the Van. These factors were not, of course, the highlights of the holiday but they helped to make it run smoothly as we are by no means hardened campers - we like our bit of adventure, but we like our warm showers as well!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    This is so hard to say - things like great sunrises, quad biking and seeing wild animals very close up in their natural habitat are the obvious ones, but it was also amazing just to learn about Namibia and its ancient and more recent history. The last morning was very special as well, eating a Happy breakfast at a small and very pretty campsite, overlooking a great African vista.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    The group was led by Shane, ably assisted by Happy and Beli. They were a great team and I cannot speak too highly of them. They were hard working, competent, knowledgeable and always on the lookout for ways in which they could help. Their wildlife spotting abilities were amazing and they were endlessly patient. Even the best of us leave our brains behind when we go on holiday sometimes and they were calm and practical in all sorts of potential crises [mentioning no names, but if I say lost phone which turned up (eventually) in back pocket, you know who you are!]. Happy deserves a special mention for his cooking - what he can do in iron pots over an open fire is incredible - and for our party he did veggie and gluten free options as well. In general all the food we had was good but we all agreed that there was no restaurant meal we had that lived up to our campfire meals. He gives Happy Meals a whole new meaning! Shane was an endless fount of knowledge about all aspects of the country; history, politics, wildlife, you mention it and Beli's dancing was brilliant - very funny. All three of them were exeptional; they made our holiday really.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Take a head-torch. Take African (three round pin) adaptors. Make sure you've got a couple of fleeces and warm PJ bottoms for night toilet visits and generally chilly evenings. We went in the dry season so didn't actually get bothered a lot with mosquitos, but you should still do all the preventative stuff. Be prepared for early starts "Families! Good News! We only have to get up at 5.30am tomorrow!!" Have a sense of humour and be prepared to be flexible. Read the trip notes properly - they are accurate and informative.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    There are some long and bumpy journeys - some of the kids read, or plugged themselves into music. Personally I was happy to look out of the window and the time flew by. Spend as much time as possible at the waterhole at Etosha - be patient; it may seem as though nothing is happening and then a whole family of elephants will happen by. Be prepared to join in and have fun - but don't expect any late night partying! Enjoy - "In Africa, everything is possible".
  • Reviewed August 2015
    Anonymous

    Our best ever holiday

    Namibia is beautiful and we loved all the activities. The desert was stunning. It was my favourite part and the sandboarding was so fun. We saw so much wildlife, including 21 lions in just three days!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Watching the sunrise over the sand dunes and then rolling down afterwards. Watching a stand-off between an adult rhino and a herd of elephants at the Etosha watering hole. Also the township tour in Swakopmund was really interesting. Our guide was really friendly and it was good to see how people live and meet some of the residents. My son tried a fried caterpillar!

    What did you think of your group leader?

    They were brilliant - they took excellent care of us. Great leadership by Ronney and we loved our daily PFT (plan for tomorrow) by the campsite fires. He has an incredible wealth of knowledge of his country (history, wildlife and plants). He also has a great eye for spotting wildlife. Jonas was an amazing cook and he was so friendly. Lollo was fantastic too. The three of them were a part of our holiday and not just the guides. We were sorry to have to say good-bye.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Take lots of warm clothes if going in the UK summer months - it is cold at night. We bought extra blankets when we were there. It is very dry and dusty. Take head torches. The drives are long, but the countryside is so stunning, it is easy to pass the time just watching the scenery change and spotting wildlife. Also take binoculars for Etosha.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    It was hard to leave such a wonderful country!
  • Reviewed September 2013
    Anonymous

    NAMIBIAN ADVENTURER

    This trip exceeded our expectations. There was never a dull moment and always something different to see or do.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Climbing the "Big Mama" sand dune in the heat of the desert sun and then running and jumping all the way down. Watching animals in their natural environment coming to drink at the waterholes. The elephants seemed to be having such fun rolling in the mud and completely submerging themselves, apart from snorkel like trunks, under the water. Seeing the Milky Way so vividly in the black night sky.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Shane was excellent. He had amazing local knowledge and went out of his way to be helpful.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    If you travel in August you won't need a raincoat but make sure you have enough layers of warm clothes for cold nights and early mornings. It was 1C when we landed in Windhoek.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    This was a fabulous way to experience a taste of Africa. All of the wildlife you can imagine, incredible landscapes that are so different from England and arid conditions that have to be experienced to be believed. The security of having local guides meant we were able to relax completely without the worry of working out where to go and what to see. Tents were put up and taken down, meals were prepared and washed up and happy campers enjoyed a worry free holiday.
  • Reviewed September 2012
    Anonymous

    NAMIBIAN ADVENTURER

    A family holiday providing varied experiences and great fun for all ages.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Experiencing the fantastic Dunes and the desert environment with a guide/tour leader who had an amazing knowledge of creatures and plants and who was able to engage children and adults in his explanations. The second, equally brilliant experience was seeing so many animals and birds in their own environment - looking out for these made the long journeys pass quickly. 

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Our 2 Leaders were equally amazingly good.  The first for his knowledge of his country and his ability to pass on this knowledge and interest to all family members and the second for his equally good knowledge but also for his fantastic meals - incredibly good - being family recipes in some instances and each day received with amazement that he could produce such good, varied food at all times.  The good natured way in which they managed the children enabled them to enjoy the holiday - giving them some freedom to spend their energy, and their patience in answering all questions in depth and so the young people will have learned a great deal about a culture different from their own.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Be prepared for lengthy journeys between centres which are largely on rough roads.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    This is the second Exodus holiday I have had this year.  The first was very different the Simeon Mountain Trek, Ethiopia and both, though being different, have been excellent in similar respects ie organisation, food (very important on a holiday expecially when in a different culture), leaders (knowledge, attitude and enthusiasm).
  • Reviewed August 2012
    Anonymous

    NAMIBIAN ADVENTURER

    A family trip of a lifetime.  Everything worked - the Exodus description of the trip was accurate giving us a good sense of what we could expect and the reality exceeded our expectations.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Watching the sun rise over the sand dunes at Sossusvlei on my daughter's 18th birthday was something very special.  But quadbiking on the dunes at Swakupmond was thrilling in a completely different way.  Seeing the landscape change from dunes to scrub desert to lush-ish green covered mountains as we travelled north through the country was pretty amazing.  And then all those incredible birds and animals.  How one can become nonchalant about seeing springbok, zebra, giraffes, warthogs, baboons, the seal colony, elephants and even rhino seems unthinkable but then add a lion with its kill; two lionesses with their cubs, cheetahs, hyenas and even a rare sighting of a leopard with photography opportunities to die for and words begin to fail me...Plus the fact that we are the least likely family ever to sleep under canvas and yet we loved it... all.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Franz was terrific.  He struck the balance between sharing his knowledge of the country and its inhabitants (of all kinds) and giving us the space to spend family time together.  We drove along looking left and right and straight ahead learning about Namibia's history, its economic, political and cultural context, and came home much more knowledgeable about the birds and animals, the geography and geology and so on.  He was really well organised and prepared us fully for each day and all activities.  And he had a great sense of humour too. And accompanied by Jonas, who cooked for us brilliantly, they were a great pair for whom nothing was too much trouble.  

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    If you go in the summer months; do take lots of warm clothing.  We didn't really have enough and there were nights and early mornings when warm gloves, woolly hats, ski jackets and thermals would have been useful. Don't expect to have much time to read and relax.  We took books that didn't even come out of our bags. And there is quite a lot of bus travel; so do take this into account.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I would heartily recommend this trip and the luxury of having a teenage departure meant that the itinerary was adapted to meet the needs of the group.  We also loved the balance of camping and nights in lodges.
  • Reviewed June 2011
    Anonymous

    NAMIBIAN ADVENTURER FAMILY HOLIDAY

    Brilliant family holiday with lots of variety and something for everyone. We travelled as our last big family holiday before our eldest son- 18 went to uni, we also have a 15 year old son and we all agreed it was probably our best holiday yet.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Too many to choose just one moment but sunrise over the sanddunes and the amazing variety and numbers of animals at the waterhole in Etosha were real highlights. Also camping- the stars and animal noises at night, we especially enjoyed the last campsite with no elecricity and no-one else there.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Shane and Jonas were brilliant, very knowledgable about the country and animals [the food was also really good and tasted all the better for being cooked and eaten in the open air].

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    It can be cool at night and on the skeleton coast but also very warm further north so take plenty of layers. Malaria tablets weren't necessary when we went. Lots of early starts and busy days.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Lots of travelling which wasn't a problem for us but could possibly be for smaller children, our truck kept breaking down which took up time to fix. Would highly recommend the kayaking at Swakopmund and the sandboarding- you'll not do it anywhere else and the setting was lovely with a beautiful sunset over the dunes!!

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